Sheriff Jim McDonnell announced the destruction Thursday of 7,044 weapons confiscated within in Los Angeles County. This action comes typically in July, in compliance with California Penal Code 18005(c), which calls for weapons unable to be sold to the public or returned to their owners, to be destroyed.
The weapons included in this destruction will be repurposed for good: Melted into steel reinforcing bar, better known as rebar, and transformed into elements of construction for upgrades in freeways and bridges in Arizona, California and Nevada. At 19,840 pounds, the almost-ten tons of metal melted today will be used for the betterment of transportation tomorrow.
“For the second year in a row, I have the privilege of overseeing our annual gun destruction event,” said Sheriff McDonnell. “Today, over 7,000 firearms will be translated from their potential of destruction into the certainty of construction. These weapons which were used to harm, take away life, and effectively destroy happiness, families and communities, will be converted into something positive and beneficial.”
Annually, Gerdau Steel Mill, located in Rancho Cucamonga, generously donates its furnace, equipment and personnel to convert these weapons into steel rebar. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Works also donates the trucks every year which transport the weapons to the Mill.
“Our continuing partnership with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department reflects our commitment to safety, both at our steel mill and in our community,” said Mark Olson, Vice President and General Manager of the Gerdau Steel Mill. “As California’s largest recycler, Gerdau will convert these firearms into environmentally-friendly rebar that will be used to build new infrastructure across our state. A large portion of our product is seismic rebar, which helps protect people and concrete structures from earthquakes.”
This year, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and four participating agencies contributed confiscated weapons to the annual destruction:
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department: 4,035
Los Angeles Superior Court: 868
El Monte Police Department: 92
Beverly Hills Police Department: 49
Compton Police Department: 2,000
In special recognition for conducting the gun destruction event, United States Congresswoman Norma Torres, 35th District, presented the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and Gerdau Steel Mill with Certificates of Special Congressional Recognition.
For more information, please contact Public Information Officer Nicole Nishida at 323-810-1973, or the Sheriff’s Information Bureau at 213-229-1700.
For information on behalf of Gerdau Long Steel North America, please contact Kimberly Selph, Communications and Public Affairs, at 813-362-6394 or Kimberly.email@example.com.